Tag Archives: squirrel

I think I gave my music app a stroke

First of all I’m feeling a bit better after yesterday’s debacle trying to get my second Moderna shot and having to bail for home when my Lyft fare got close to what I had in my bank account. I was stuck in the line of cars outside Fair Park for almost an hour before I decided to cut my losses and leave.

So, anywho, I called up my Supermix because I needed some tunes, and this is the first page listing: Clap Your Hands by Parov Stellar, The Pusher by Steppenwolf, Aqualung by Jethro Tull, I Am a Soul by Nibana, Sing Sing Sing by the Benny Goodman band, Tom Sawyer by Rush, Green-Eyed Lady by Sugarloaf, Still… You Turn Me On by ELP, and last song on the first page White Rabbit by Jefferson Airplane.
Lots of Classic Rock, some Electro Swing, some Swing, and one Trance. And there are other genres on other pages, but I don’t feel like listing them out right now.

I’m on day three of trying to daywalk, and I even got up before noon today. That’s something that doesn’t happen often, that I get up without using an alarm before noon. I woke up before 0900 even and after I decided that I wasn’t going to get any more sleep I got up. I had my alarm set for 1100, but I was already sitting behind my computer reading web comics and organizing my thoughts for today’s blog post when it went off and I had to go turn it off.

And they just played the Benny Goodman. Impossible to be sad-sad when Sing Sing Sing plays, depressed sure, but not sad-sad. As in I felt a little better until the end of the music.

Now, thoughts, I had a train of thought going before the Goodman squirrel wandered by, but that got completely derailed. Daywalking, I was trying to get a train of thought going on trying to fit in to a diurnal society when you’re mostly nocturnal by habit and employment. I notice that I tend to get a second wind from about 0100-0500 if I don’t force myself to go to bed by 2300 and get to sleep immediately. This was way before I did the cleanup writing thing, dating back to all-nighters in college back in the ’70s. Which I know was before some of you were born, I can’t help when I was born and what was going on back then.

Speaking of which, there is a meme for us Boomers: What were you doing the day JFK was shot? And alternatively Kent State? For some Kent State is a “Huh?” and for some of us it’s when we lost our innocence, when we discovered our government wasn’t protecting us anymore, if it ever had. For me I wasn’t tied into that culture because I wasn’t tied into any culture except what I saw on TV.

That was brought home to me sophomore year in High School when we had a test in social studies about local and national trademarks, and since I had only moved to the area about a month previous to the start of school I had no knowledge of any of the local stuff. But national brands I aced because that was what military brats zoned in on, stuff that was consistent from one duty station to another. Local brands were what we looked for after finding the things we knew to be good, or at least not-bad. I can’t speak for the rest, but I looked for something that was familiar and known good and then immediately went looking for local favorites after that, sometimes finding something good, like the restaurant in the strip mall at the end of the street we lived on when I was in the last part of 8th grade (4th school).

And this has meandered all over the place as I chased down metaphorical squirrels from wherever they come from to wherever they have to go once I start chasing them. In case you don’t know where the “Squirrel!” meme comes from “Squirrel!”


Bacon Jerky round 2, and the Feed

OK I bought a second package of bacon jerky, from a different manufacturer and a different flavor and curing technique. Today’s brand was from Carnivore Candy and uses a salt-and-sugar cure along with a dash of jalapeño pepper in the post-cure process. It is not greasy in texture but does tend to adhere together in a single mass inside the package. It also has a better mouth feel than the Oberto product I tried last month. I would be interested in trying the Carnivore Candy brand without the added jalapeño flavor (hint, hint). One thing is for sure, this is a huge step up from the “cold bacon” mouth feel of the Oberto brand bacon jerky. Second thing is that there was just enough jalapeño added to cause my allergy-clogged sinuses to drain, which was not a bad thing. My head feels much better after eating the Carnivore Candy bacon jerky.

First of two links from People for Bikes, is your state stomping on proven bicycle infrastructure because of NIH? WHAT MARRIAGE EQUALITY SHOULD TEACH STREET DESIGNERS: JUST BUILD IT Ordinarily I would not advocate building things not approved by your state DOT, but if you follow the NACTO or CROW manuals, you are working from proven designs (outdated demi-buttocked designs in the case of the NACTO manual) and should be OK.

And in case you get the colly-wobbles from building from a proven design manual not accepted by your state DOT, THREE CHARTS FOR PROTECTED BIKE LANE DESIGNERS TO REMEMBER IN 2015

Two links to a Lifestyle story, one Pre- and the other Post-ride. Memorial Ride Planned for Maryland Dad Killed in Hit-and-Run While Biking and Memorial ride held in Baltimore for bicyclist killed in hit-and-run crash The victim of this wreck was hit by clergy who had multiple DUI and drug convictions prior to the wreck. In many states this would qualify her for felony manslaughter charges.

There are legal ways of taking the law into your own hands. Justice on two wheels in the heart of London Yep, in many places helmet-cam video is acceptable for police to issue tickets or more even though the LEO was not physically present to view the infraction. Check with your local fuzz to be sure.

Instead of predicting the future, ask if this will happen. Good strategy. 33 questions that’ll shape Portland bike news in 2015

And a terrifying example of a fork failing a “squirrel test” with a chunk of road junk standing in for the squirrel. WATCH: Terrifying cycling crash near Byron caught on film Having just finished watching the Mythbusters marathon on the Science Channel and in particular the “flipping motorcycle myth” I really wish they could have seen this video. Could someone send it to Adam and Jamie, por favor?

And I seem to have run out of links, again. I keep hitting refresh on “Dumbing of Age” to see what Becky and Joyce are up to (not much).

Billed @€0.02, Opus the Poet (I no longer feel the need to advertise that I am an “unkillable badass”)

So how do you pronounce “Francis/es” anyway, and the Feed

Short answer to the question posed by the headline, two syllables with the second syllable vowel sound a schwa (ə) or fran’ səs. Since Francis/es has expressed no gender, or much of any personality traits aside from a tendency to go in a different direction than expected at startup, I will not assign gender to it. I mean I know it’s a truck, made for carrying loads, but I detect no masculine tendencies nor feminine ones either for that matter. Sure Gigi was like a 9YO girl who swore like a sailor, and Blue was like an eager puppy, and Stratus was like Eeyore except not as talkative, but each of those bikes was either old or abandoned or both. Francis/es is for all intents and purposes a brand new bike and hasn’t had the time to develop a personality yet. There’s no “magic” there yet aside from the stubborness.

On another front, I’m having a small problem with the interior diagonal for the passenger compartment of the Sprint T. To get maximum torsional stiffness I need to run the diagonal from the top of the rear hoop to the bottom of the front hoop or vice-versa. Since the front-to-back diagonal will have to run through the side of the body to get to the base of the rear hoop that only leaves the rear-to-front as a viable alternative. And even that has its difficulties, because that diagonal would have to meet the bottom of the front hoop just to the left of my left foot in this picture:
inside view with legs
And as you can see, it’s already pretty crowded there.

Up first, we finally have a clear picture of the jihadist squirrel that suicide attacked a CA cyclist. Cyclist recalls being ‘torpedoed’ by squirrel I would say that fork definitively passed the “squirrel test”.

Still in CA we get a Ted Rogers report on a red-light running cyclist. Alleged red light running cyclist killed in San Diego; first bicycling death in city this year and Cyclist killed in Midway District collision As Ted reported local cyclists say the signal does not detect the presence of a cyclist and does not change when one is there, which kind of conditions cyclists to run that particular light in particular and traffic signals in general. Intersection protocols to avoid or reduce damages, and get the infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent.

Moving up the coast a tiny bit (by TX standards). Cyclist seriously injured in crash with car on PCH in Long Beach Not much to go on with this one, I think because that new passing law makes hitting a cyclist from behind an automatic ticket and if the ticket isn’t acknowledged publically there will be outrage from cyclists and drivers. But since there was no intersection given it is pretty much certain that this was a hit-from-behind wreck. Protocols to avoid or reduce damages, and get that infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent.

Still in CA but in the northern half of the state. Police: Napa cyclist hit by pickup, seriously injured Looking at the Street View of the scene we see a T intersection with 6½ lanes and no sensor in the bike lane to trigger the signal. This configuration all but demands that cyclists run the red when there is no motor vehicle traffic to trigger the signal unless that camera can detect a bike in the bike lane (if you move on step closer to the intersection than the link I picked you can see the camera). Depending on the cycle time for the light a cyclist could leave on the green and still be in the intersection when the light phase turned green for the other direction. Not knowing the timing of the light phases I can’t say precisely what happened here, but I do know that getting that infrastructure “up to Dutch” would prevent future wrecks.

Two guys riding one bike in GA are hit, one dead, one injured. Bicyclist hit and killed by car in DeKalb County Note that this is a secondary wreck induced by bad infrastructure after the actual cyclist lost control of the bike in limited visibility. The only way to avoid this wreck was to not have the first wreck that caused the cyclist to go onto the road in front of the weapon vehicle. The way to prevent a future wreck is to get that infrastructure “up to Dutch” so that a bicycle wreck doesn’t turn into a car wreck.

Breakthrough in a FL hit-and-run. Possible vehicle in cyclist hit-and-run recovered This was a hit-from-behind of a cyclist riding in the bike lane. I hope they throw the entire law library at this fool because what happened was in front of dozens of witnesses.

More on a MI wreck. Police identify bicyclist killed in early morning crash as Hudsonville man, 54 Cyclist now definitively was lighted beyond legal minimums when hit from behind by a literrally blind driver (oncoming headlights!). Not much the cyclist could have done to avoid this one as the wreck took place just before a merge from 3 lanes in each direction to 2 and a cyclist would need to be where he was hit to prevent motor vehicles from forcing him off the road. Still would require Dutch-quality infrastructure to prevent.

A wreck in far West Canuckistan. Cyclist injured in collision with car on Island Highway Still trying to figure this one out. They were both at fault? How does that happen?Get that infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent.

More on the bike/ped wreck in West Canuckistan. Cyclist’s speed not a factor in Stanley Park crash that killed Chinese tourist Outside witnesses have come forward with statements that the pedestrian stepped out right in front of the cyclist leaving no time to react or avoid the wreck.

This is a scary wreck in Oz. Dashcam video: Young girl cyclist in head-on holiday park crash with car (but gets up and walks away) This demonstrates what getting infrastructure “up to Dutch” looks like in a wreck. In the Netherlands this would be exactly the same as it is in the video, shared space with an extremely low motor vehicle speed limit, and you see the outcome. Nothing! the kid gets up and walks away from the wreck unharmed except for needing a change of pants and underwear.

Our Daily Ted. Morning Links: Automakers build in deadly distractions; CD15’s Buscaino multi-modals his way to work

Infrastructure! news from CA. Injured midtown resident challenges Sacramento law allowing sidewalk cycling I actually see this as a positive for cycling if this suit is allowed to continue, as cyclists would then be allowed to sue for the state allowing cars to take over the streets and roads without designing the infrastructure for all users.

A little whimsical infrastructure from West Canuckistan. Vancouver to remove mysterious unicycle markings on bike lanes Turns out unicycles are already legal in Canuckstani bike lanes, no additional signage needed.

Are you still paranoid when they really are out to get you? Cyclists: Motorists See You as Moving Targets The scary thing is a cyclist will get passed by hundreds of cars during a long trip, if only 0.01% of them have socio- or psycopathic drivers that could mean you’re life is in peril 2 or 3 times a day.

And those were all the bicycle-related links I could find for today. I have some on-deck for tomorrow…

Billed @€0.02, Opus the unkillable badass Poet

Riding Francis/es is a major pain in the neck, and the Feed

I wasn’t riding Francis/es very far yesterday, but I was riding long enough to place myself in pain. I always have a bit of neck pain after doing the blog post on the laptop, but yesterday was just beyond the pale for it. I mean lots of lying around waiting for the pain to subside so I could go type some more kind of pain. The only thing different was the trip to the laundromat on Francis/es with the new handlebar configuration, with about a mile spent total on the bike trying to bend my neck far enough back to be able to see forward. So here’s the score: change seat to move contact points out where they don’t hurt any more, but that moves me forward enough that my right knee bangs against the handlebars in the rear set configuration. So turn the handlebars back the normal direction and I’m back to the awful neck pains from being bent over too far to see where I’m going, even worse that previously because that thing on the back of my neck is even bigger than it was when I first got Francis/es. I’m cutting metal for that new stem tomorrow…

I’m opening up with a suicidal squirrel in CA. Squirrel’s final dash ends in disaster with cyclist injured and Renegade squirrel darts into cyclist’s path, causing strange crash, injury This is not so unusual, can’t these fools Google “squirrel test”? Squirrel test for carbon forks

Continuing with the theme of WTF!?! is this report. Charges in hit-run death of man who killed cyclist Yes, the man who killed a cyclist in a hit-and-run wreck was killed in a hit-and-run wreck before he could go to trial, by another drunk driver. Not-quite-instant karma but still pretty-quick karma. Now for his killer also.

And just down the road a piece from that wreck we get a hit-from-behind wreck between a cyclist and a blind driver. South Christian HS teacher killed in bicycle crash Cyclist was exceeding legal minimums for lighting and reflectivity and was riding in a conspicuous position when hit from behind on the only road that would take him to his workplace… This is one of those wrecks where the cyclist did everything possible to not get hit and still got hit because a driver did not pay adequate attention to speed and what was on the road in front of him.

Another FL cyclist is killed in the most deadliest state in the US to walk or ride a bike. Report: Santa Rosa County deputy strikes, kills bicyclist The cyclist may have been preparing to make a left turn in compliance with the laws requiring moving to the left side of the lane.

More on the NC wreck between a sidewalk cyclist and a driver going backwards across said sidewalk. Cyclist killed in Chapel Hill collision identified Nothing new here, just confirmation of the cyclist’s name which we already had last week.

Update on a CO cyclist injured in a right hook. Boulder weighs settlement of cyclist’s lawsuit In this case the cyclist has them over a barrel, the cop had not fully passed the cyclist when he made his right turn into the cyclist. I would say intersection protocols but those require warning to employ, which the evidence suggests was not available to the cyclist in this case.

Update on the victim of a CA wreck. Graduate Student Matthew O’Neill Killed In Cycling Accident

Our Daily Ted. Morning Links: CicLAvia coverage, cyclist injured in bike-on-bike wreck, benefits of protected bike lanes

Someone call the Wah!-mbulance for this butt-hurt driver. Cycling vigilantes are doing more harm than good Cyclists are loading up on cameras for the same reason as Russian drivers loading up on dash cams: drivers are stupid and entitled.

National Infrastructure! news. Why 12-Foot Traffic Lanes Are Disastrous for Safety and Must Be Replaced Now If you apply highway standards to city streets you should not be surprised when people try to drive at highway speeds…

News about really dangerous infrastructure in NE. Lincoln cyclists anxious after uptick in accidents Three fatal or life-altering wrecks on one stretch of road in less than 2 months is bad infrastructure that does not meet current needs.

And those were all the links I had about bicycles today.

Billed @€0.02, Opus the unkillable badass Poet

RPG night was a bit chaotic and other stuff on Wreck-Free Sunday

Yesterday was RPG night, with a bit of a fluster cluck to start out. We had to move to a different venue when both of the hosts at our regular location were called in to work, which really screwed the meal planning. Our regular location we have access to a kitchen with normal pots, pans , and a slow cooker, the backup location we don’t have kitchen access so the ramen and beans menu planning went out the window. I got some cash from Mrs. the Poet for transportation and food and I got some “mexican” food from Taco Bell.

I had to create a new character because the character sheet for the one I just finished creating (the F.I.S.S) was at the regular location, and I had an idea for a bicycle-based speedster. My new character has the superhero name of “Flash Drive” and wears what looks like motorcycle leathers and helmet with a full-face shield to hide his secret identity as Clyde Bonney, international ultra model. Yes, going back to his origin story, Clyde Bonney was just a better than average bicycle messenger when he was sandwiched between two cars running the same red light in opposite directions. The Gods intervened with the single comment “Well, that sucks,” and granted him super speed (288 MPH sprint and extended cruise) and super toughness, genius level thinking and deduction powers (think Batman), and since there wasn’t much left of his original face they rebuilt him with god-like levels of male beauty, all in an instant. He went into the intersection a high-level normal human and got squished between two guys running that red light, and reappeared without his bike next to the wreck still moving as fast as he was before the wreck but on foot instead of a bicycle, and he literally walked away from the wreck with the remains of the bike trapped between the two cars. The wreck and subsequent publicity resulted in a career in international modelling and high society with a high middle-class income and lots of “perks” like free clothes and sometimes the use of cars. This results in the disadvantage of “the curse of Beauty” in that almost all bi people of both genders, and gay men or straight women, are pursuing him for a relationship or just sex. I have already decided that when it’s time to replace my costume with something a little more bulletproof my secret identity is going to “Cosplay” my superhero identity in the old costume, and model the cosmetic proofs of the new costume in a national “America chooses the superhero’s new costume” publicity campaign. Mind you this is in a universe that has a superhero-only edition of “People Weekly”.

The first adventure was getting the party together, as we have a retired ninja, a genetic super-soldier werewolf type character, and my speedster character working as part of a team in the small New England city of Cape Temperance. The big problem we have is we have two characters with rather high caloric needs, mine and the werewolf that looks like Bigfoot in his human form, and the werewolf does not know who he is because he was getting implanted memories during his “vat stage” of development and that part was interrupted by the lab he was growing in being raided in the last game session which we played with villain characters. There was a lot of RP in the session with only a single combat with a dumb “brick” character who was strong and tough but not very bright. My character managed to get some blunt force damage in, and the ninja was able to significantly slow him down with his sword, with the werewolf character keeping the brick’s hands busy until he managed to take the brick out with a clawed kick to the throat that brought him down just as the media showed up. Flash Drive was given partial credit as the ninja was invisible most of the time especially when he would attack with his sword someplace I had just attacked visibly with my fists at super speed.

As I tell Mrs. the Poet I role play because it’s fun and therapeutic. I get completely out of my normal headspace as a bicycle advocate and journalist and into the headspace of my character, which makes the time I have to be “just me” much more tolerable. I find the best way to cope with life is just to leave it behind for a while and get out of my normal way of thinking.

I finally got the video game I asked for for Father’s Day, Gran Turismo 4. Now I need to get a controller that will let me control my car better. Basically I have the choice of another standard controller or one of two Logitech steering wheels, the Driving Force Pro, and the GT Force. I tried the standard controller with the analog stick under my left thumb controlling the steering and no matter what car I was driving I was all over the road in it. I was able to keep a car on the track at the Motegi Super Speedway, but only just barely by putting hard compound tires on the front and super soft on the rear, causing a huge push that allowed me to be able to move the stick a visible amount. Setting up a car like that on any other track would result in plowing off the track. So, before I can build the virtual version of my car, I have to find a controller I can drive with, and then learn how to drive in the simulation, then create a virtual copy of the Sprint T. And this is what I’m starting from on that.

Tribute T Mod Wrap
low angle view
Low angle side view

That last picture is really good to work from the CAD drawing (2D) perspective as it is almost a square-on with minimal perspective view, I could trace that and have a very good starting point for revamping it to the Sprint T configuration. Imagine that body with the cage from this car slapped over and around it.

Pavement sprint car

Note the tubes running from the top of the roll cage to the front of the car, they help with triangulation of the frame and they increase the depth (d) of the frame, basically making the upper part of the roll cage the top rail of the frame. With the bending moment being a function of d4 everything that can be done to make the top of the cage function like the top frame rail has massive effects on the stiffness of the frame, and the more space I can make the frame enclose just does the same thing to the torsional stiffness of the entire car. In simpler terms moving the diagonal brace from the top of the front hoop so that it connects to the top of the front crossmember and then running another brace from the crossmember to the bottom of the front hoop makes the car hella stiff in bending and torsion. Running diagonal braces inside the cage to the bottom rail from the tops of both hoops makes the center bay of the frame just that much stiffer again, and gives me more to grab hold of to get in and out of the car. Putting the cage (mostly) on the outside of the body does the same thing, making it stiffer by making it enclose more volume while keeping it triangulated, and by doing that I can use smaller and lighter tubes in areas not specified by racing safety regulations, which makes the whole car lighter. The Speedway Motors kit uses a 1½ by 3″ by 0.120 wall rectangular tube as the sole frame member for their kits.

Bare frame

But the Sprint T could use the 1½” by 0.060 wall square tube as the bottom rail which weighs about ¼ of the Speedway Motors part. The Sprint T frame will weigh slightly more than a standard T-Bucket frame, but the difference in torsional stiffness would be incomparable. Think heavy ladder compared to light jungle gym. Compare the number of tubes and space enclosed on this frame to the one on the Speedway kit.

bare sprint car frame

The roll cage hoops and internal diagonal braces have to be 1½” by 0.120 wall chrome-moly round tubing because those are required to run an open car in SCCA Solo competition in the Modified category which is where the Sprint T will wind up, but aside from the 1½” by 0.060 wall square tube bottom rail most of the frame will be 1″ by 0.060 wall round or square steel or chrome-moly (depending on what is available when I go shopping).

And I got called old politely again last night on the return trip from the RP game session. There were some rowdy kids that got on the train drunk (yes I said drunk kids) and one of them had problems not sitting on me when he was trying to talk to the rest of his party. He wasn’t being malicious or even obnoxious, but it was slightly uncomfortable. Another person on the train admonished the kid to be more respectful because “what if he was your grand-daddy?” :scowl: Dangit, I’m not old enough to be a “revered elder” yet. 😉

And that’s all I have to say today. Sorry about the squirrel chase around the topics. 😉 😛

PSA, Opus